Things You Hear on NPR: Yeah, Amnesty Did Lead to More Illegal Immigration; Let’s Do It Again Anyway
April 2, 2017
NPR reviews some of the history of American immigration law, and reaches some admirably honest conclusions:
The Simpson-Mazzoli Act was introduced as a way to end illegal border crossings once and for all. It had three parts: Give amnesty to those who had been in the country for at least five years, crack down on employers who hire people who can’t legally work here, and pump up border security to prevent future illegal crossings.
President Reagan supported the bill and signed it into law in 1986. Three million people were granted amnesty under the Simpson-Mazzoli Act, but by 1990 the number of unauthorized immigrants was back up to 3.5 million.
The National Review editors have a new piece out today against the amnesty currently being contemplated in the Senate.
The fundamental problem with this bill, both in its earlier form and in the new Hoeven-Corker form, is that it confers an immediate amnesty on illegals already present in the country in exchange for promises of tightened border security at some point in the future. Not very tight, mind you: The bill’s own supporters do not contest forecasts that over the next 20 years we would once again find ourselves with 11 million or more illegal immigrants, just as we have now. Stronger security provisions, such as requiring that the border fence be completed before amnesty is handed down, were rejected.